Yocona, 1919

May 27, 2020

Yocona, 1919

Yocona: a river in Mississippi.

Builder: Dubuque Boat & Boiler Works, Dubuque, Iowa

Length: 182'

Beam: 34'

Draft: 3' 6"

Displacement: 383 tons

Cost: N/A


Commissioned: 19 October 1919

Decommissioned: 15 June 1925

Disposition: Sold

Machinery: 2 tandem compound steam engines, stern paddle-wheel

          Maximum Speed: 
          Economic/Cruising Speed: 

Complement: 35

Electronics: None

Armament: None (small arms?)

Cutter History:

The Yocona was one of two Kankakee-class stern paddle wheelers built for the Coast Guard, the other being Kankakee.  In 1916 an act of Congress authorized the construction of river steamers for flood relief and rescue work, among other tasks, on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.  The act was passed in direct response to the horrible floods of 1913.  The 182-foot shallow draft, steel-hulled riverboats were both built by the Dubuque Boat & Boiler Works in Dubuque, Iowa.  They were propelled by rear paddle-wheels for better river navigation and the ability to reach narrow or shallow river areas.  They were equipped with searchlights, powerful pumps, and radio equipment and were designed to be the "mother ships" for fast 26-foot "sea sleds" (CG Nos. MB-1435 & MB-1436) and river punts that were used to transport displaced disaster victims to the river boat's spacious cabins.  Both were commissioned on 19 October 1919.

The Yocona was based at Vicksburg, Mississippi, and arrived there on 18 January 1920, after first stopping at Memphis, Tennessee.  She underwent repairs at the Johnson Iron Works in Algiers, Louisiana, during the summer of 1920.  She underwent boiler repairs from 25 June to 14 July 1921.  She assisted in the Black River flood in 1922.

She was examined by a board of officers on 4 February 1923.  Her smokestacks were repaired from January to March of 1924 at the plant of the Mississippi River Commission.  She was placed in reduced commission at Vicksburg on 15 June 1925 and was sold on 2 November 1925 to the Anderson Tully Company for $27,555.

A photo of the USS Yocona

No caption/date/photo number; photographer unknown.

The unique stern-wheeled cutter Yocona, tied up along the bank of an unknown river sometime in the 1920s.

The crew of the CGC Yocona

"USS Yocona, CG, stern-wheeler at Vicksburg, 1925.  E. Zoole, LTjg, Commanding."; no photo number; photo by "Moore."

The officers and crew of the Yocona at Vicksburg, Mississippi, in 1925.  Her commanding officer, LTJG E. Zoole, USCG, is seated on the far left of the first row.  Note the number of African-Americans among the crew.


Cutter History File.  USCG Historian's Office, USCG HQ, Washington, D.C.

Donald Canney.  U.S. Coast Guard and Revenue Cutters, 1790-1935.  Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1995.

U.S. Coast Guard.  Record of Movements: Vessels of the United States Coast Guard: 1790 - December 31, 1933.  Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1934; 1989 (reprint).